Michael Brown’s funeral took place Monday morning at the Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis. The temple seats approximately 2,500 people. The eulogy at the funeral was delivered by Reverend Al Sharpton, who is also an MSNBC television personality. Sharpton has been accused of “race-baiting” by some who have watched his speeches about the Ferguson shooting.
The father of the teenager shot by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, Michael Brown Sr. called for “calm” and “peaceful” protests throughout the day. Michael Brown Sr. said all the family wanted was peace as his son was laid to rest, during a Peace Rally in St. Louis Sunday.
People from around the country traveled to Ferguson to attend the Michael Brown funeral, or protest outside the memorial ceremony. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, The Obama administration sent White House staffers from its My Brothers Keeper Task Force, Heather Foster and Office of Public Engagement staffer Marlon Marshall to the Michael Brown funeral in Ferguson. Marshall reportedly attended high school with Michael Brown’s mother.
Outside Mike Brown’s funeral, there were lines of mourners waiting to get inside and supporters of the Ferguson teenager mingling upon the sidewalk simply to be near the memorial service, according to the New York Times. One man outside the Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church was selling T-shirts with the slogan “Hands up don’t shoot,” and another individual was giving out pamphlets for a political candidate.
Ferguson area television news crews appeared to be focusing on the arrival of celebrities: rapper Snoop Dog, movie director Spike Lee, and radio host Tom Joyner. The Brown family described the young man shot in Ferguson as “Big Mike.” They said he was good at fixing things and he liked rappers Lil Wayne and Drake; video games; Grown Ups 2, and watching the television show Family Guy.
Will Acklin, a 63-year-old black man from Little Rock, Arkansas, had this to say about why he chose to attend Michael Brown’s funeral:
“It’s important in that as a child I was pushed by police, mistreated by police, cursed by police, and I was a good kid. I was an honor student. When I heard this, I felt compelled to come here and show my respects.”
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon did not attend the funeral. A representative from the governor’s office said he did not want to “serve as a distraction” at Mike Brown’s funeral and want to give the family time to mourn and heal.
The Ferguson protests have grown smaller in recent days and students finally began the new school year today. A grand jury has been impaneled to determine whether or not police officer Darren Wilson should have levied against him due to the Michael Brown shooting.
[Image Via: Whitney Curtis/The New York Times]